Pervasive Computing

Module aims

Also known as Ubiquitous Computing, Pervasive Computing is the result of computer technology
advancing at exponential rates. That is, computing devices are becoming progressively smaller, more
powerful and more connected and this his brought with it a trend toward artifacts in both the natural and
manufactured worlds having hardware and software embedded within them. That is, one can envision
that almost any device, from clothing to tools to appliances to cars to homes to the human body to your
coffee mug, can be embedded with chips to connect the device to an infinite network of other devices.
The goal of pervasive computing, which combines network technologies with wireless computing,
lntemet capability and some subjects related to artificial intelligence, is to create an environment where
the connectivity of devices is embedded in such a way that the connectivity is unobtrusive yet useful,
and always available.

The course surveys the emerging hardware and software landscape of this subject examining the issues
concerned with a pervasive infrastructure, wireless networks, low-resourced computing, protocols and
emergent algorithms. In doing so we review examples of innovative systems and applications.

The course includes a strong practical element where students will be asked to develop services
providing support for environmental monitoring and smart home energy management.

Learning outcomes

Students will understand the challenges for low-resourced computing and the schemes to overcome these.
Students will understand how radio networking and protocols behave.
Students will get a feel for the complexity that cyber-physical systems bring.

Module syllabus

Course Structure
- Introduction to Hardware - nodes, resources, abilities etc
- Introduction to Software - Tiny OS, Tossirn.
- Understanding Wireless
- MAC protocols
- Routing Protocols
- Time Synchronisation
- Key Decentralised and Bio-inspired systems
- Project and Presentations


The Undergraduate Networking course, Operating Systems courses etc. An ability to program in C.

Teaching methods

Tutorials will let students get used to Tossim simulation then get to use real motes to measure the environment in an intelligent home.

Each student will have to complete an implementation project. Projects will be carried out on real hardware and software testbeds. Students wilt be expected to be self-motivated to leam the technologies and prepare a presentation to describe their findings.


Large coursework element and exam.

*This is a level 6/H course.

Reading list

Module leaders

Professor Julie McCann